Moles are small dark spots on the skin that can be a normal finding, but they can also indicate potential signs of skin cancer. Therefore, it is important to monitor any changes in moles that may occur over time. While a mole alone does not necessarily mean you have cancer, monitoring moles closely and checking in with a doctor regularly is key to catching any potential skin cancer symptoms early. Here are some tips for how to monitor your moles for potential signs of skin cancer.
1. Do Periodic Self-Checks: A good habit to get into is doing periodic self-checks, where you examine all the moles on your body and take note of any changes. This includes changes in shape, size, color, or texture, as well as any new moles that may have developed over time. Be sure to get a full-body assessment at least once a year with your doctor.
2. Track Changes: It’s important to keep track of the changes in moles that you observe, including noting when you first noticed them and what shape, color, or size they have changed to. An easy way to do this is by taking pictures and logging any changes in a journal.
3. Monitor Areas That Are Exposed To The Sun: Moles are especially prone to changes due to sun exposure, so it’s important to be extra vigilant when checking moles on areas that are exposed to the sun, such as your face, arms, and legs.
4. Watch Out For Early Signs Of Skin Cancer: Some of the early signs of skin cancer include a mole that is larger than usual or has an irregular shape, is not symmetrical, has irregular borders, is itchy or painful, and/or has multiple colors in it. If you notice any of these signs, see a dermatologist immediately.
5. Have Your Moles Checked By A Pro: Even if you are diligent about self-checks, it’s still important to have your moles examined by a dermatologist. Depending on the size and type of mole, you may need to have it removed and biopsied to check for signs of skin cancer.
By following these tips, you can remain proactive about monitoring moles for potential signs of skin cancer and catch any issues early so that they can be treated right away. Always be sure to check in with a dermatologist if you notice any changes to your moles, so that they can provide you with proper medical advice and care.
It is important to remain proactive and vigilant when it comes to monitoring new moles and changes in existing moles. Becoming familiar with the warning signs can help identify any potential skin cancer, and tracking changes in moles can help facilitate early detection of melanoma. With the right knowledge, you can spot new or changing moles and ensure that they are appropriately monitored by a dermatologist. Stay informed to keep your skin safe!
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The content of this article is for informational purposes only and should not be taken as medical advice. The information provided here is based on research and anecdotal evidence from Dr. Tardieu’s cases and experience, and does not constitute a professional opinion or recommendation. Before undergoing any facial treatments and/or surgical procedures, please consult your primary care specialist, skin specialist, plastic surgeon, or cosmetic dermatologist to ensure that mentioned skin treatments is safe for you. Neither Dr. Marie-Ange D. Tardieu, Tardieu Skin Clinic, Anoki Skin Clinic, Skin Post, their employee agents or associates accept responsibility for any harm that may occur from following the information in this article. Additionally, individual results may vary and any perceived benefits of treatments/procedures should not be taken as a guarantee of similar outcomes for each patient.